ERNEST JAMES CONITO SR.Ernest James Conito, Sr., of Duluth, passed away on Monday, Aug. 13, at Essentia St. Mary's Medical Center in Duluth.
Ernest James Conito, Sr., of Duluth, passed away on Monday, Aug. 13, at Essentia St. Mary's Medical Center in Duluth.
Ernest was born on Sept. 7, 1923 in Duluth, to Carl Sr. and Rose (Blotti) Conito.
He graduated from Denfeld High School in 1941 and served his country in the 3rd Infantry during the Korean War in the U.S. Army. Ernest was a confectioneries salesman for over 40 years and also owned and operated The Italian Village for 14 years. He was married to June Giroux for the past 59 years. Ernie was a West Duluth Icon having resided in West Duluth for all of his 88 plus years.
He was a lifetime member and past post commander of the American Legion and a life member of the VFW. He was also a life member of the Moose. Ernie was inducted into the Minnesota Softball Hall of Fame in 1989 and into the Duluth Bowling Association Hall of Fame in 1985.
One of his most memorable moments was meeting and talking with Joe DiMaggio for half an hour in a Detroit Hotel. Ernie was very proud of his Italian heritage. He was an avid participant and sponsor of many West Duluth Area sports including; the Jr. bowling program, little league, and fast pitch softball. He was one of the biggest New York Yankee and Notre Dame fans in Duluth. He touched the lives of many West Duluth children through his involvement and sponsorship of several youth sports programs.
He was preceded by his parents; four brothers and three sisters.
Ernest is survived by his wife, June; five children, Cheryl Conito of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Ernie Jr. (Yvonne) Conito of Duluth, Paul (Jayme) Conito of Duluth, John (Tina) Conito of Lakeville, and Jeffrey Conito of Roseville; seven grandchildren, Darrin, Joey, Paul, Ryan, Natalie, Kevin, and Shayna; three great-grandchildren; and two sisters, Rose and Kate.
GATHERING OF FAMILY AND FRIENDS: 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. with Military Honors at 12 Noon on Saturday, Aug. 18, 2012 in the Bell Brothers Funeral Home, 601 N 56th Ave W, Duluth. Online condolences may be left for the family at www.bellbrothersfuneralhome.com.